Blog September 13, 2019

Separating facts from fake news: Open tech platforms for UK sales and lettings

By Trevor Youens

From 24-hour TV news to the endless stream of information available online, it’s becoming increasingly difficult in the modern world to cut through the noise and get to the facts. The property sector, particularly the residential agency space, is no different – but when we hear providers talking about their pioneering efforts to deliver open and connected solutions to the market, we feel the need to speak up.

Last year, MRI Software’s Chief Marketing Officer, Mandira Mehra, addressed this in a post, politely pointing out our annoyance that others in the real estate technology industry seem all too happy to jump on the bandwagon of our open and connected ethos. Fair enough – it’s an approach that’s won us much praise. You can’t blame others for looking on with interest. But when we see others claim to be groundbreaking or unique in their efforts, we draw a line.

When we revealed a new brand identity in 2017, it reflected our commitment to offer clients freedom, choice and flexibility in every market and region we serve. It was a bold new strategy in our industry, and it’s one we’ve embedded at the heart of our organisation, and have continued to develop and enhance in the two years since.

UK residential sales and lettings is an area of our business where it is particularly active. Interoperability is crucial within the market and we have led the way in offering two-way integrations between our products, complementary point solutions and recognised platforms that are widely used in the industry. Across our suite of agency solutions, there are more than 50 such examples, both with members of our Partner network and a wider ecosystem of proptech providers and innovators. From referencing and marketing through to utilities management and communications, we have led the way in enabling leading operators to create a flexible and connected tech stack, built on our comprehensive platform, that works how they need for their business.

The importance of openness is demonstrated by the amount of chatter there’s been on the topic in recent months. Such is the appeal, there are players willing to ‘hype up’ their message. Of course, we’d be hypocrites if we just expect you to accept our own credentials as gospel. But, that’s the point. Challenge our claims. Ask us to prove them. We’re confident that you’ll find we don’t just talk the talk.

Indeed, we encourage you to ask questions wherever and whenever you see or hear tech organisations singing their own praises on this topic. To help, we’ve provided some guidance on what you should be looking for in these two articles: 10 qualities of providers that embrace open technologies and 10 ways to tell if your enterprise software provider is truly open. Only by putting providers to the test will you be able to sift through the empty statements – and it seems there are plenty out there.

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